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CITB's board leads the way but huge challenges remain

The CITB has reached the second base of its reform process this week with the unveiling of its new slimmed-down board.

Its chief executive Adrian Belton spoke of radical change and that’s what we’ve ended up with.

In place of the 20 men and one woman drawn from industry bodies and companies, we have a new board made up of five women and three men drawn from both inside and outside the sector; they will be advised by a new council.

Though Number 10 would have encouraged the CITB to boost diversity, the calibre of the new members speaks for itself.

“Setting out a clear vision that can rally the industry will be essential for the board”

The move to a more modern structure aims to provide a fleet-of-foot organisation that can be more objective and responsive to the wider needs of industry while not getting slowed down by meeting vested interests.

The CITB has certainly got its work cut out, as it navigates new processes where training funding is paid direct to employers; boosting the number and types of apprentices; aligning college intake with employer requirements and generally persuading employers that training is their problem, not someone else’s.

Of course, with funding from a levy, the CITB has a more difficult balancing act than most, and the splintered nature of the sector means criticisms and detractors will be inevitable.

Setting out a clear vision that can rally the industry will be essential for the board. But so will be developing a very thick skin.

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